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Become an Email Marketing Expert

Tomorrow I am giving a presentation on email marketing, so I thought I’d share my notes with you here. Also, I just got a link to this blog post: 100+ Tools & Tutorials to Optimize Your Email Marketing Campaigns. It’s an amazingly in-depth list of tools and resources that will help you improve your email campaigns.

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Emails sent to your contacts should be informative and useful, not blatant, advertisements. Readers appreciate resources that help them, and they keep that in mind when they need your services or products.

How many emails should I send each month? The answer to this will vary with who you’re talking to. Given my experience as a sender (and as a receiver), I recommend two times per month:

Email Marketing Is Dead…Long Live Email Marketing

So I keep hearing email marketing is dead. That spam killed it. And while, despite trying to run by opening new email accounts, spam keeps finding me and hunting me down while it breeds like bacteria, I don’t believe that email is dead. I just read an article in Revenue Magazine called “Old Dog, New Tricks,” about how email is in fact alive and kicking. It says that Web 2.0 is breathing new life into email campaigns.

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The article says that according to Datran Media’s December 2006 annual email study, 83.2% of those surveyed chose email marketing as their primary marketing strategy for 2007. That says a lot. It says that business people are getting sales out of email campaigns, so how could email be dead?

A Mature Medium Undergoing Change

Email has definitely evolved in the 10 years it’s been around. Now the focus is on user-generated content (UGC). Rather than pummeling subscribers with sales messages, more businesses are offering content from customers, which creates a better tie between company and subscriber. Businesses are also using email to promote their blogs, RSS feeds and videos. The less like advertising it looks, the better received it is. And if readers enjoy the emails, they’ll always come back and become customers.

How to Make the Most of it

I think email marketing is a great tool, if used right. I put out a newsletter for Egg Marketing once a month that has some of my better articles from this blog as well as news about what’s going on with the company. If I or the company has been involved in something noteworthy (i.e. my becoming an SOB on Liz Strauss’ blog!) I’ll put that in there too. I’ll include a coupon at the bottom for my services, but overall the newsletter isn’t blatantly screaming “buy from me!” I am actually considering putting out more emails, because it seems the consensus has changed about how frequently to send out messages.

4 Ways to to Keep Your Email Marketing Out of the Viagra Inbox

I don’t like spam. I’m sure like me, your spam folder is filled with emails that promise to fulfill your every sexual need. Unfortunately, I’m not the target market for Viagra and its counterparts. While the idea of spam is that by blanketing every findable email address with an ad for a given product, a percentage will buy it, this isn’t an effective email marketing ploy. Don’t do it.

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Spammers are careless marketers. But, if even 1% of 100,000 buy their product, that’s enough to pay for the time spent spamming! According to Techdirt, 14% of people read spam, and at least 4% admit to buying products from spam emails. Still, it’s an unsavory practice, and you can hope that spammers don’t sleep well at night.

How to Stay Out of the Spam Box

So how do you make sure only those people who are within your target receive your marketing message? In this case, we’ll focus on email marketing. Here’s a true or false quiz to see if you know the answer.

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